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Fjordland Scenic Cruising with Princess??


Protanope

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Has anyone experienced so called scenic cruising by Princess Cruises in Fjordland National Park? On the cruise I booked, it leaves Dunedin 6PM on an autumn weekday evening, it stops in at Milford Sound late the next day leaving no later than 6PM from Milford Sound , having spent most of the day "scenic cruising". What do you see scenic cruising besides Milford Sound? When leaving Milford sound the ship heads toward Sydney.

 

I look forward to an explanation of the expected experience.

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Has anyone experienced so called scenic cruising by Princess Cruises in Fjordland National Park? On the cruise I booked, it leaves Dunedin 6PM on an autumn weekday evening, it stops in at Milford Sound late the next day leaving no later than 6PM from Milford Sound , having spent most of the day "scenic cruising". What do you see scenic cruising besides Milford Sound? When leaving Milford sound the ship heads toward Sydney.

 

I look forward to an explanation of the expected experience.

Absolutely awesome! Incredible! The fjords of New Zealand are as awesome, or even moreso, than Norway or Chile. The ship will travel in and through the fjords, which are spectacular. A year ago, we went from Hobart to Milford Sound to drop passengers off for an overnight tour to Dunedin; then, we spent the next 24 hours traveling through the fjords. Unfortunately, the weather deteriorated dramatically as we approached Dunedin and we were not able to get into some fjords and had to miss Dunedin completely. Those on tour were flown to Auckland and caught up with us the next day.

 

FYI, I was on the same cruise as Sultan. :)

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Ours was reverse on the Sapphire Princess May 2008 -- from Sydney toward Dunedin. We arrived at Milford Sound early in the morning and going into the Sound was scenic. Then it went slowly around the Sound, stopped to unload on to a small boat like the ship's tender those who had signed up for the Milford Sound Excursion. Then it started raining and we watched the waterfalls from the Skywalker's lounge. Around 2pm the Captain announced that we would skip Dunedin (Port Chalmers) because of bad weather. Those who were on the excursion went back to Auckland on that dingy and next day were flown to our port after Dunedin!

 

Pam had posted while I was still typing. Now you have two versions of the "same" cruising!

 

(Later Added): BTW, Pam's post are always more accurate than mine!!

 

Has anyone experienced so called scenic cruising by Princess Cruises in Fjordland National Park? On the cruise I booked, it leaves Dunedin 6PM on an autumn weekday evening, it stops in at Milford Sound late the next day leaving no later than 6PM from Milford Sound , having spent most of the day "scenic cruising". What do you see scenic cruising besides Milford Sound? When leaving Milford sound the ship heads toward Sydney.

 

I look forward to an explanation of the expected experience.

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Has anyone experienced so called scenic cruising by Princess Cruises in Fjordland National Park? On the cruise I booked, it leaves Dunedin 6PM on an autumn weekday evening, it stops in at Milford Sound late the next day leaving no later than 6PM from Milford Sound , having spent most of the day "scenic cruising". What do you see scenic cruising besides Milford Sound? When leaving Milford sound the ship heads toward Sydney.

 

I look forward to an explanation of the expected experience.

 

We sailed on the Diamond Princess at Xmas/New Year 08/09 and Milford Sound was unbelievable. It was truly spectacular and amazing to experience sailing into the sound on such a large ship.

Believe me, you won't be bored!

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We also did it eastbound from Hobart to Dunedin.

 

The biggest, brightest double rainbows I've ever seen were in the New Zealand fiords. They came right down to the water, and colored the hillsides behind them. Absolutely breathtaking scenery.

 

It's a big deal for the whole day that you're there. The CD announced what time we would be approaching the entrance (in the morning, not too early). We had a brochure delivered to our cabin the night before. There was a naturalist on board doing a narrative over the loudspeakers. We had intermittent light showers/sun that day that made for the most spectacular greens and other colors.

 

We had a balcony cabin with a covered balcony, and the scenery was so close and so huge that we kept running from our Aloha deck cabin to the Terrace Deck to get bigger views from the back of the ship.

 

It's a good day to dress in layers, because the showers can make it feel chilly when you're outside. A Goretex jacket with a hood is a plus.

 

I would say it was better than the Chilean fiords and about the same as Misty Fiords National Park in Alaska (which is also spectacular). I haven't been to Norway yet and so can't compare it with those.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I appreciate people's comments very much. I trust there will be much besides just Milford Sound, which I shall see regardless of what excursion options we choose. If we did choose an overland excursion from Dunedin to reconnect with our cruise ship in Milford Sound, we'd miss the so called Scenic Cruising except for our exit from Milford Sound toward Sydney. Based on people's comments I think we'll skip the overland excursion and do the scenic cruising instead. Incidentally, when I was looking at the pictures of Milford Sound on Google it reminded me somewhat of Western Brook Pond in Newfoundland which is a 15 km long lake on Newfoundland's west coast which was at one time a Fjord. Western Brook Pond is in beautiful Grosse Morne National Park. I haven't yet seen the Norwegian Fjords so I can't compare. Milford Sound may be finer than Western Brook Pond, but we'll have to see it first to say!

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I agree with the above posters.... We've done Milford Sound twice, one in perfect weather, one in rainy weather and either way, it's an experience not to be missed. It is vey difficult to get there except by ship of some kind and is spectacularly beautiful.

 

it's a whole day thing, with naturalists and commentary on board, and amazing vistas everywhere you look. It's a not to be missed part of this cruise and I think you'll be very impressed by what you see and will consider it one of the highlights of the trip.

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  • 5 months later...

Not quite December, but we sailed through Milford Sound, Jan 95, on the original Pacific Princess.

 

Just before the ship entered the park area, there was a brief downpour (squall), and then it was quite sunny and nice. The downpour was enough to "charge" the waterfalls, and they were in full flow, and stunningly pretty.

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Could you tell me what the weather was like cruising through the fjords in December?

We were there on New Year's Day 2003. Remember, this is the southern hemisphere, and our winter is their summer. We had a lovely sunny day, with many passengers wearing shorts. I sat in a deck chair with a drink while DH eagerly took pictures of the wonderful scenery! It wasn't really hot, more like Toronto in late June. Rain is possible, of course.:)

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Many years ago I worked for the Tourist Hotel Corporation in Milford Sound for 3 summer seasons and loved the changing weather. It will be fun seeing it 30 years on from the Diamond Princess in December.

 

The annual rainfall is almost 7 metres so it could be a beautiful blue sky day or pouring with rain! Either way the scenery is spectacular.

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Could you tell me what the weather was like cruising through the fjords in December?

 

we cruised on the Dawn Princess last february and it was very nice, even february can be a bit cold so its nice to rug up

 

the Diamond cruises over to NZ from Sydney over christmas so if you are planning to go in december take a warm jumper just in case............also the Sun goes out of Sydney and the Dawn out of Melbourne

 

rkmw

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Don't think Princess sails there in Dec?

 

 

Hi Colo Cruiser, the Diamond Princess starts her New Zealand cruises from Sydney December 10th 2009.

 

We have cruised to N.Z 5 times . in January, and February. the weather has ranged from fantastic, to freezing, it is hard to predict.

after rain is best, the waterfalls are beautiful.

 

kind regards, Lorraine:):)

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Also it is worth considering the land tour of Milford Sound - I haven't cruised the sound with Princess but have visited it whilst on a driving tour of New Zealand the Sound itself was fantastic - comparable to Norway and the drive through the mountains to get there was awesome. So whichever you choose you'll have a great trip.

You will see a lot of the Sound as your ship sails in as to drop you off for the tour you'll have to travel most of the sound.

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Hi Colo Cruiser, the Diamond Princess starts her New Zealand cruises from Sydney December 10th 2009.

 

We have cruised to N.Z 5 times . in January, and February. the weather has ranged from fantastic, to freezing, it is hard to predict.

after rain is best, the waterfalls are beautiful.

 

kind regards, Lorraine:):)

 

Thanks, did not know they started that early.

I was thinking of Norway! :eek:

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We have been to 3 sets for fjords and out of Norway, Alaska and Chile I definitely think that Norway is the most beautiful, IMO. Cant's speak for Greenland but would definitely like to do that one. Is there anymore besides New Zealand??

Hoping for good weather that day otherwise it can be miserable but pretty.

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